Digital health interventions for gestational diabetes mellitus: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials

Boutheina Leblalta, Hanane Kebaili, Ruth Sim, Shaun Wen Huey Lee

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Good blood glucose control is important to reduce the risk of adverse effects on mothers and their offspring in women with gestational diabetes (GDM). This review examined the impact of using digital health interventions on reported glycaemic control among pregnant women with GDM and its impact on maternal and foetal outcomes. Seven databases were searched from database inception to October 31st, 2021 for randomised controlled trials that examined digital health interventions to provide services remotely for women with GDM. Two authors independently screened and assessed the studies for eligibility for inclusion. Risk of bias was independently assessed using the Cochrane Collaboration’s tool. Studies were pooled using random effects model and presented as risk ratio or mean difference with 95% confidence intervals. Quality of evidence was assessed using GRADE framework. Twenty-eight randomised controlled trials that examined digital health interventions in 3,228 pregnant women with GDM were included. Moderate certainty of evidence showed that digital health interventions improved glycaemic control among pregnant women, with lower fasting plasma glucose (mean difference -0.33 mmol/L; 95% CI: -0.59 to -0.07), 2-hour postprandial glucose (-0.49 mmol/L; -0.83 to -0.15) and HbA1c (-0.36%; -0.65 to -0.07). Among those randomised to digital health interventions, there was a lower need for caesarean delivery (Relative risk: 0.81; 0.69 to 0.95; high certainty) and foetal macrosomia (0.67; 0.48 to 0.95; high certainty). Other maternal and foetal outcomes were not significantly different between both groups. Moderate to high certainty evidence support the use of digital health interventions, as these appear to improve glycaemic control and reduce the need for caesarean delivery. However, more robust evidence is needed before it can be offered as a choice to supplement or replace clinic follow up.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0000015
Number of pages23
JournalPLoS Digital Health
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 24 Feb 2022

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